The Moto Quest - The bike!

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The Moto Quest bike - a Honda Tiger 200cc


TMQ bike is based on a Honda Tiger 200cc, known as GL200 in the rest of the world, which will be customised by Verve and myself into an “adventure scrambler”. The original bike is very reliable and has a strong engine perfectly suitable for a long cruisy ride.


Initially I was bearing a bigger bike in mind, but based on the route I will be throttling along, it made sense using a smaller bike that’s also well known in Asia. It will be easier mechanically maintained, as well as getting my hands onto spare parts if needed. The ones of you that have travelled in SE Asian countries are aware of the poor road conditions and the fact, that travelling with a speed over 100km/h is almost impossible. Small country roads and tight streets in crowded cities will be more enjoyable on a littler bike. I will also be taking my moto on trains and boats, crossing small bridges and may drop it at some stage – weight is a considered factor, too.



Being out there on my own, I knew it was necessary to develop some mechanical skills; something I have been dreaming of since I was 17 but my parents didn’t like the idea of their “smart little girl” getting her hands dirty… Now I am finally following up on that dream and my eyes sparkle like in a candy shop, when I am in the verve workspace. The boys are patiently teaching me what I need to know to help myself if something happens on the road.


I am learning how to clean a carburetor, fix a tire, change a lamp bulb, fix the chain tension, wire cables, change oil, recharge the battery and much much more…



Verve Moto is specialised in handmade custom motorcycles and The Moto Quest bike will be representing their level quality of work. Instead of just buying the required spare parts, they have been manufactured and tailored for my ride. Tank, fenders, exhaust, seat, handlebars and the faring are not just from the shops. To make a handmade tank for example, it takes a month of hard work but the final product is astonishing. Verve makes them out of a single sheet of metal and it’s really amazing to see how it is taking its shape. I am so excited about witnessing that process and being involved in the actual work. It will be a bike that doesn’t only look cool, but has a soul.



Based on the fact that we bought a second hand bike, Verve wanted to make sure every engine-based component was in best condition for such a long trip. They checked and changed everything possible. Now the motor has new valves, cleaned valve seats, oversized piston, a new cam, timing chain and clutch, they bored out the sleeve and all bearings and bushings are new.



In the next few weeks we will be building the seat as well as the brackets for my saddlebags and a lockable security box. Additionally to this, the key position will be changed and the electric customised up. As soon as my baby is ready for the test ride, I will take it around Bali before we finalise the look with paint and a final polish.



Yes, I am truly building my dream!!


Photography: Tom Hawkins


See more infos about Aileen and her road trip:




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